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Jul. 18, 2014

Cuyahoga County Finally Opens New Administrative HQs

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The new Cuyahoga County Administrative Headquarters building is finally open for business. Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald, County Council President C. Ellen Connally and Fred Geis of Geis Cos. were present on July 15 at 2079 E. Ninth St. to celebrate the event. The new headquarters will be home to more than 600 county employees.

Cuyahoga County first announced its plans to move its headquarters in 2012. This new location is part of the former Ameritrust complex, acquired by the Geis Cos. last year. The Streetsboro-based developer is investing more than $260 million to revitalize this once dormant section of downtown Cleveland. Once finished, it will be home to apartments, offices, retail space and even a hotel.

The new headquarters building is LEED Silver certified. It stands eight stories tall and has 220,000 square feet of space. Geis started work on the project in April 2013. Cuyahoga County will lease the new facility for the next 26 years. At the end of the lease, the county has the option to purchase the building for $1.

In a news release, Cuyahoga County said the move is a major component of its Real Estate Property Consolidation Project. By consolidating its operations, the county could save $84 million over 20 years.

Cuyahoga County also said that Geis Cos. has exceeded the requirement to hire a 40 percent “in-county workforce,” including 20 percent Minority Business Enterprises and Female Business Enterprises, set before the start of construction. Forty-seven percent of the workers hired for the project came from Cuyahoga County, with 52 percent Minority Business Enterprises or Female Business Enterprises.

As for the former Cuyahoga County Administration Building, that site is now the home of the new Hilton Cleveland/Downtown Convention Center Hotel, scheduled to open just prior to the 2016 Republican National Convention, in the spring of 2016. The $272 million project was started earlier this year.

“The new Administrative Headquarters is a building for the residents of Cuyahoga County,” Ed FitzGerald said in a statement. “Built for accessibility and efficiency, the headquarters marks the return of the Ameritrust complex to the private sector and the revitalization of a long-dormant corner of downtown Cleveland. Surrounded by the thriving Playhouse Square district and the new Convention Center and rising hotel just blocks away, this building is just one of many exciting projects bringing new life to the city.”

July is turning out to be a really good month for Cleveland and Cuyahoga County, as the opening of the new Cuyahoga County Administrative Headquarters is just the last in a long line of good news the region has received in recent weeks.

First, the city was picked to host the 2016 Republican National Convention, an event with an estimated economic impact of about $400 million. Next, LeBron James announced he’s returning home. This move made FitzGerald very happy. Last Monday, he released an analysis showing that LeBron’s return might result in an annual direct economic impact on the region of $170 million from Cavs games, as well as an indirect impact of approximately $500 million per year and other benefits, including new jobs and the increase of personal earnings.

Photo credit: Geis Companies

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